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Old 10-30-2005, 05:44 PM   #21
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Smile Healthy comfort food? Possible?

I like grilled cheese sandwiches and Campbell's cream of tomato soup. In the winter a bowl of bean soup is always comforting. Preferably, start with dried beans you soak overnight. Put in crockpot or cook on stove with chicken broth, vegetables, and if handy, a ham bone. Cook for a long time. Mmmmm.........
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Old 10-30-2005, 08:03 PM   #22
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Honeybee, when I don't feel well, I want toasted (Velveeta) cheese sandwiches with Cambell's chicken noodle or cream of potato soup (with crackers).
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Old 11-01-2005, 05:53 PM   #23
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Many people consider comfort foods those with rich flavor, high fat, and loads of carbs. Examples; mashed potatoes and gravy, open-faced turkey, pork, or beef sandwich on white bread with gravy, turkey and dressing, with all the trimmings, meatloaf with mashed potatoes and gravy, meat pies, pot pies, etc.

The bad part about each of these foods is that they are nutritionally unballanced. They have either high fat, or high starch, or both, and with little other food value. Let's see how we can change this.

The problem with starch is that it is a complex sugar and is basically all you get from white-flour products. It spikes the blood sugar which in turn causes over-production of insulin to lower the high blood sugar. This in turn signals the body to metabolize the sugar into the cells, and convert the remaining glucose into lipids (fats).

To avoid spiking the blood sugar, include foods high in soluble fiber with the starch. Use whole-grain breads, sweet potatoes instead of plain ones (very high in fiber, vitamin A, and a host of other nutrients, and taste great). Cut back on butter and replace with flavored broths. Use herbs and spices to enhance flavor without increasing caloric intake. Use products such as Splenda, or Sunnet.

You can retrain yourself to search after healthy comfort foods. Meats are fine, so long as they are reasonably portioned and contain moderate to low fat. Use healthy oils such as sunflower and olive oil. Instead of garlic bread from the store, brown whole wheat hoagie buns, drizzled with extra-virgin olive oil, under the broiler. Remove and rub the toasted surface with fresh garlic. It tastes so good it doesn't need anything else. But of course, you can top it with fresh tomatoes, sauteed with onion, oregano, a sprinkling of sharp parmesan cheese, etc.

Look for nutrients and fiber in your foods, the more, the better. Eat moderate portions, and you can then enjoy any "comfort food" you like.

Ad yes, a good stew with potatoes, meat, carrots, and green beans, swimming in a roux based gravy is comfort food extraordinaire. But it isn't very healthy. Substitute with a good New England boiled dinner, replacing plain potatoes with rutabegga. You can use venison, beef, corned beef, or poultry as the meat. Or if you enjoy wild game, rabbit, grouse, pheasant, these all work well too.

I grew up eating freshly caught brook trout with my dad. Cooked in a foil pouch with some green beans, slivered almonds, and a bit of salt and pepper and you have one of my favorite, and most healthy comfort foods. Yeah, I remember the golden crust of fish dredged in flour and pan fried to perfection. But I had to modify the cooking technique to elliminate the starch. I'm diabetic now. My Dad wasn't. I still love brook trout's flavor though.

Think of why comfort foods are comfortable to you, what and who they make you remember. Then, think of healthy foods you enjoyed with special people from your past, be it your Grandma and Grandpa, or your best high-school buddy. Let those foods become your new comfort foods. And create healthy comfort foods for your family. Use whole grain flour for your home-made pancakes and waffles. They will become a tradition, and will bring back great memories for your family as they grow.

That's what comfort food is all about.

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Old 11-02-2005, 03:03 PM   #24
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Originally Posted by Michael in FtW
Since "Comfort" food is really a subjective personal thing - what food brought/brings you comfort ... and what foods are your trying to make healthier?
I agree with Michael. Notice the post goes back to June. Grace if you're still out there, tell us the comforting foods you like and perhaps we can come up with some ideas to make it "healthier." Also, are you looking for low fat, low calories, counting carbs, on a restricted diet, etc.?
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Old 11-04-2005, 03:50 PM   #25
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oatmeal with raisins
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Old 11-08-2005, 06:05 PM   #26
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Originally Posted by mudbug
oatmeal with raisins
Mudbug, I sure wish I didn't hate oatmeal. It's so "stick to your ribs" and so very healthy.
I adored my grandpa, and would have eaten sticks and bugs for him, but no matter how he doctored it up (butter, cream, raisins, brown sugar, you name it) I gagged everytime I tried to swallow the stuff.

It's a texture thing.
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Old 11-08-2005, 06:20 PM   #27
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I love my tortilla soup made with chicken and lots of veggies. It's so light and tasty unless of course, you add the avocado and cheddar at the bottom of the bowl. Mmmmmmmmmmmm

If you have much, give of your wealth. If you have little, give of your heart. - Arab proverb
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Old 11-08-2005, 06:54 PM   #28
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Soups are big time comfort foods for me...vegetable/beef or venison, beef or venison stew, potato leek, clam chowder, chicken noodle, gumbo, ham'n beans, split pea, etc, etc, ad infinitum.
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Old 11-08-2005, 08:02 PM   #29
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When the weather gets really cool or cold, I like potato soup or chili. Both of them are very warming. I make grilled cheese with the soup and cornbread with the chili. With a bit of a change, it is much easier to be enthusiastic about cooking than back in the summer. I was quite tired of summer cooking, or preparing, also tired of summer food.
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Old 12-10-2005, 03:29 PM   #30
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I love peanut butter cups. They are probably not good for me now, but apple with peanut butter is much better. I like the granny smith apples (real sour).
I love to cook with wine... sometimes it even gets in the food

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Old 12-10-2005, 06:18 PM   #31
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Comfort food for me is a bowl of chilled fruit salad. I'd like to call it "Rainbow Fruit Salad". Combine following ingredients:

Open a can of low-sugar canned peach, disgard the syrup
Slice some bananas and sprinkle with some lemon juice (so it won't brown)
Cut a fresh navel orange, peeled & diced
Slice some fresh strawberies
Add some sweet black grapes or tart blueberries
Add a spoon of whipped cream or non-fat yogurt (if you want some protein)

Hmmm... I can feel the refreshing sensation coming down my spines.
Eat. Drink. Be Merry. Live Long. Prosper.
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Old 02-13-2006, 09:03 PM   #32
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Try making lasagna without noodles and instead use slices of zucchini. Try reduced fat mozzarella too, you won't notice the difference.
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